Library of Congress Hawk Granted Her Freedom

Hawk released in rural Virginia

By Tom Sherwood
|  Tuesday, Feb 8, 2011  |  Updated 7:30 PM EDT
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A hawk captured in the <a title=Library of Congress is set free in Virginia." />

A hawk captured in the Library of Congress is set free in Virginia.

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Hawk Rescued in Library of Congress

A female hawk, trapped for almost a week in dome of the reading room of the Library of Congress, is rescued.
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In a rural area of Virginia, a female hawk that had startled readers at the Library of Congress and captured the attention of the nation was set free Tuesday.

The Canadian hawk had been trapped inside the ornate reading room of the library. It apparently had been chasing a pigeon or other food in January when it got trapped in the library's cupola. It flew around the cupola with people below straining their necks to see.

After a few days of trying, the hawk was captured without being harmed.

It spent the past two weeks at the Raptor Conservancy of Virginia in Falls Church, where birder Linda Moore helped care for it.

Moore released the bird on Tuesday at the Sky Meadows State Park near Delaplane. She said the hawk was "ready to go." It had eaten well in captivity and regained the weight it had lost.

Moore walked out into a partially wooded area Tuesday morning, carefully took the hawk from its cage and then gingerly let it go. The hawk was gone in seconds, up in the trees and, presumably, ready to search for its own food.

"But hopefully, not back in Washington, D.C.," Moore said.

The Raptor Conservancy is a nonprofit mostly run by volunteers.

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